Thinking back on tonight's first round Kings pick, the immediate reaction of Kings fans has mostly been "Who's that guy?" or just clear outrage. Maybe Petrie has once again pulled a hidden gem out of the NBA Draft. After all, no one knew about Peja or Martin when the Kings decided to pick them. So, after several beers, I've calmed down and decided to convince myself that Jason Thompson will also be one of those hidden gems.
Thompson did average about 20 points, 12 boards, and about 2.5 blocked shots during his senior year, but a common criticism is that Thompson played in a lower division, thus, weaker competition. He was, however, matched up against Michael Beasley on Nov 25, 07, when Rider played against Kansas State.
In the game vs Kansas State, Thompson scored 24 points on 9 of 14 shooting and grabbed 7 boards in 39 minutes of play, matched up against Beasley. Beasley had 13 points on 5 of 11 shooting and 10 boards that game.
Also, MSNBC wrote a long article on Thompson, saying Thompson might be the top sleeper in the 2008 NBA Draft.
So, before jumping to conclusions, I'm going to let this one ride out. Maybe it was in the best interest of the Kings to draft a solid player who's shown he can provide big numbers, rather than a talent with high risk.